by Flex Luthor
"There's just not enough time for me to hit the gym".
We've all heard (and maybe even said) it before. Of course, somewhere deep down, we know that's BS. When it comes to things we want to do, then time is never an issue. We make time when it comes to those things. I'm always amazed at how people are able to put time, effort, and money into maintaining their houses and cars, but when it comes to other, ultimately more important matters such as the environment or their own bodies, excuses are numerous. Lack of time is, at the very least, near the top of the list when it comes to excuses.
The ones who do themselves the biggest disservice by claiming lack of time are office workers. On top of not getting the physical exercise they need, they spend the better part of their days sitting on a chair. If there is also the bad diet cherry on top of the sedentary lifestyle sundae, then you really are on the wrong path. The good news is that the right path is only a routine tweak and a perception adjustment away. This week's blog is dedicated to the office workers out there.
In most cases, the idea that there is no time is an illusion. It is a misunderstanding of what is happening. Here is probably what happens: you get up in the morning, sometimes with barely enough time to grab a bite and make it to work on time. You work the whole day, with a lunch break either at your desk or out somewhere. You come home feeling drained, with either eating and relaxing the only things on your mind, or having to take care of one or more children. By the time you do all that stuff, it's time to go to bed and start all over again the next day.
Sounds about right?
Here's the thing, though: you only need 30-45 minutes of exercise a day to stay healthy. Allowing an extra 30 minutes to go to and come back from the gym, that takes us up to somewhere between an hour and an hour fifteen minutes. Let's even call it an hour and a half, just to be on the safe side. No one is too busy for that. If you have that impression, then I suspect your time is a bit mismanaged. So what are the possibilities when a 24 hour day just doesn't seem that long? Well, that all depends on the individual, but here are some suggestions:
- Early in the morning: If you are a morning person, then going to bed and getting up an hour and a half earlier is your best bet. And the good news is that the gym is an awesome place early in the morning. So quiet and peaceful, with pretty much all the machines and weights available the whole time. You can really get some thinking done!
- Lunch hour: This is what I do to get my lifting done five times a week. I have my gym gear at the office. At noon I hit the gym, which is 5-10 minutes away, depending on traffic lights. I work out for 30-40 minutes, then come back to the office. After that, I have my shake and lunch at my desk. The big advantage of this alternative is that I don't have to alter my sleeping habits, and I have the whole evening to do all the other things that matter (or at least seem to).
- In the evening: If none of the options above is feasible, then you are left with the hours after work. In my opinion, this is the hardest time to hit the gym because it presents the highest number of obstacles: fatigue and other tasks and responsibilities such as picking up the kids, keeping your better half company, grocery shopping, etc. However, this is the period where you can shift things around the most, as it is the longest one. If you are living on your own, then it's really just a matter of giving yourself a little kick in the ass and sparing the hour or hour and a half. You are master of your domain, and laziness is the only thing in your way. If you are married or in an equivalent arrangement, then this can be a great common activity. Even if it isn't, your partner would be very hard pressed to fault you for wanting to be fit and look good. You just need to have the necessary spine to stand your ground. As for couples with children, a bit of teamwork is required: you can take turns caring for the kids during 90 minute periods. You can use yours to work out, and he/she can use his/hers to do the same, or take a nap, or do anything else deemed important. Finally, if you're a night owl and there is a gym nearby that closes late or is open 24 hours a day, you can go after the kids have gone to bed. Late night gym is very similar to early morning gym, ie awesome!
So there you go, guys. There is always time to get fit. It's just a matter of altering your outlook on the whole thing. Do you ever question whether or not you should brush your teeth or take a shower? When you make your workouts part of your routine, missing a trip to the gym taints your entire day. You just don't feel right. Mind over matter, my friends; so much of life is in your head!
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